This week: Hearing voices?

Feedback LabsThe new Feedback Labs website was launched this week, and already has some good conversation starters your phone won’t ring just because you gave out your number.” A greater change has to take place to alter the perception of what will result.

on their blog, including a post by Twaweza’s Rakesh Rajani that asks how do we instill the trust needed for citizens to participate in providing feedback on services? He tells a story that makes that point that “

A big issue was brought up on the Guardian’s Global Development Professionals Network that I would love to see Feedback Labs tackle in their coming experiments: without internet (or connectivity in general), how do people share their voice? The post details the attempts of a pediatrician in Cameroon who tried to participate in an online debate about antimalarial resistance, and was constantly thwarted by poor internet connections. Her questions were not answered, her opinion wasn’t heard. This is one instance of millions of voices who are not being heard. How do we reach the offline, the unconnected?

Speaking of online voices, those that do have access participated in a recent chat panel to discuss what transparency that leads to accountability looks like. You can read up on the summary of the key points. What I found interesting was the amount of ‘coulds.’ Transparency could improve the relationship between government and citizens, it could lead to practical improvements, it could be used to actually obscure information, it could be manipulated for political means. So how do we make sure we make sure that the positive ‘coulds’ happen and the negative ‘coulds’ are avoided?

Sarah Hénon reminds us that private development assistance should not be forgotten in the current open data and transparency advances. Keep up on fiscal transparency issues and join in on a webinarhosted by OGP that will introduce the Fiscal Openness Working Group on July 30th.

Weekly updates are written by Taryn Davis of Development Gateway; email her your tips for next week's update to get a shout-out in the post

Tags: This Week